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Filter Maintenance Part I: Bakki Shower

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  • Filter Maintenance Part I: Bakki Shower

    For the benefit of new koikeepers, I think it would be useful to have a series of threads on filter maintenance. Oldtimers might pick up an idea or two as well. I thought I'd start by explaining what I do, and then others can add their practices. I'll do separate threads on Bakki Shower, bead filter, Nexus, vortex settlement, skimmer (Savio-type). I hope others will start threads on other filters/filter types. By having a thread devoted to each type, it will be easier for those seeking information to find it.

    I am starting with the Bakki Shower because it is comparatively simple.

    My weekly maintenance involves turning off the pump serving the BS. That pump has a leaf basket that needs to be emptied of leaves and often dead toads that got sucked in. Algae glarf is captured in the leaf basket also. This is cleaned out using a hose with nozzle. (Messy. Water splashes everywhere.)

    My second step is to check the filter mats I lay over the Bacteria House media in the top try. These mats capture algae glarf that would otherwise gunk-up the media. Some weeks no cleaning is needed. Some weeks these have to be cleaned using a hose with nozzle.

    Third, I check to see if leaves have blown in and remove any I see. I have a plastic groundcloth cover hanging over the unit to prevent leaves getting in, but it is not 100%.

    My Bakki is located distant from the pond, so the return water does not gush directly into the pond. (Two 4-inch pipes return the water mid-level within the pond.) A little more than a quarter-inch of water sits in the bottom tray due to the return pipes not being flush with the bottom of the bottom tray. Mulm will gather in that area. I check it about once per month by removing enough pieces of media to be able to see the bottom. If gunk is building up, I clean it out. This is a tedious process, because I do not want to rinse the gunk into the pond. The media has to be removed. I then use a tiny pump originally intended for a mini-aquarium, connected to aquarium tubing, to suck the gunk out.

    I will check the media during these times. Bacteria House captures dirt. About once a year it gets to the point that I'll remove all the media and rinse in dechlorinated water to remove the accumulated dirt. Since placing the filter mats on the top layer to capture algae glarf, the BH does not get as dirty as before.

    Most weeks maintenance time is just a couple of minutes, mainly cleaning the leaf basket on the pump. If I need to remove & rinse the media, add an hour to 90 minutes of bending & lifting (with breaks).

    Maintenance would be simpler and quicker if the media was bio-balls or similar. But, I like the results with BH, so I have not changed media.
  • #2

    Good post Mike, what i hate most about mine is the that the leaf basket does fill up rather quick. I usually empty mine every 3-4 days and see a lot of interesting stuff in it. The algae which sticks to the basket can be trouble some if it clogs all the holes.

    Can't beat BHM though.


    • #3

      The ideal set up would have a sump or particulate removal device to remove solids before water dropped on shower. Should I be Mr. Sump the solid waste remover guy? I think the shower was designed to breakdown ammonia in sollution, not removing particulates. Now removing leaves out of the yard, that is a bonus.
      Now with my system, this is where I spend my time. No fish mulm on me.
      Attached Files


      • #4

        Mike, regarding the crud that builds in the bottom tray....I have found the solution.
        Granted I do not have a bakki, but I built some large DIY tt's with a plastic catch basin at the bottom that feeds into the pond many years ago. On the feed that goes into the pond I used a threaded bulkhead so I can plug it. I just screw a cap into it when I need too clean it. I also installed another bulkhead at the bottom of the container. I think it is around 1-1.25" with a semi-permanent plug.
        Come cleaning time I just plug up the feed line with the cap and remove the plug in the lower bulkhead. Then all you need is a hose to wash it out and nothing goes back into the pond. Very simple, very cheap, and very practical.


        • #5

          Could the crud build up in the bottom tray be removed with a shop vac. I know that my 6 gallon shop vac has a tube that is approximately 1" diameter... very good for getting in tight places. It may also be helpful in removing leaves and such. Just an idea.



          • #6

            I like all of the helpful tips. It is the little things that can make pond maintenance so much easier.

            Flounder: Whenever the toads come to the pond to spawn, I know there will be some that end up in the leaf baskets. They die there after a couple of hours. If I do not not empty them out promptly, the carcasses decompose rapidly and all that's in the leaf basket is little bones. ...not good for water quality!


            • #7

              Hey Mike,
              How many kilo of BH would you need for a 1500gl pond?


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